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More than a Religion

Malise Ruthven: ‘What Is Islam?’

7 September 2016
What Is Islam? The Importance of Being Islamic 
by Shahab Ahmed.
Princeton, 609 pp., £29.95, November 2015, 978 0 691 16418 2
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... loyalties. If it is much more than a ‘religion’ – a whole, alternative way of being that is at variance with the liberal consensus – then the modern nation-state may now be in deep trouble. ShahabAhmed, who died last year of leukaemia at the age of 48, wrestles with this question in his long, extraordinary, ungainly book, which hovers uneasily between a cultural manifesto and a reader for ...

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